Round cases, lacquered dials… and “flying” balance wheels

As always with MB&F, the Legacy Machine No1 movement was the result of collaboration – in this case with two exceptional Friends, two horology stars as talented as they are different: Jean-François Mojon, known for his innovative engineering, and Kari Voutilainen, a living legend of classic watchmaking.

LM1 featured a round case – a first for MB&F – along with white lacquered dials, blued hands, and a hallucinatory “flying” balance wheel, plucked from its expected rear-mounted location and suspended like a sky-hovering extra-terrestrial visitor, oscillating under a domed crystal. While Horological Machines 1 through 4 were exuberant flights of imagination, Legacy Machine N°1 was a triumph of reimagination. By harnessing the design conventions of traditional watchmaking to form this singularly defiant configuration of a watch movement, LM1 turned out to be MB&F’s most subversive creation since the company’s inception in 2005.

The mesmeric spectacle of the suspended balance became a conceptual and mechanical leitmotiv that defined the Legacy Machine collection — illustrating how a watch could simultaneously be a part of and apart from traditional watchmaking.

An award-winning, ground-breaking collection


Subsequent Legacy Machines followed this blueprint of brilliant unorthodoxy: with LMX, an impressive series of no less than EIGHT world-premiere calibres. Conceived with another exceptionally talented Friend, Stephen McDonnell, LM Perpetual (2015) brought about a fundamental reengineering of the revered perpetual calendar complication. LM FlyingT (2019) embodied a novel vision of feminine watchmaking — fierce yet elegant, stark yet complex. LM Thunderdome (2019), developed with multi-axis tourbillon expert Eric Coudray, set a new world record with the dizzying speed of its TriAx mechanism. In parallel to these prestigious collaborations, MB&F began conceiving its own movements during this decade; the LMX engine is the sixth fully conceived by MB&F’s in-house engineering team, a considerable achievement for a brand born in the new millennium